One More Try: Rudy's Barber Shop on Melrose

— by Caroline on Crack

Even Elvis Gets the Blues

Remember how I said that you were better off going to Fantastic Sam’s than to Rudy’s Barber Shop in the Standard on Sunset? Well, I found out that there’s a new Rudy’s on Melrose, and by “new” I mean a year old (it opened Labor Day 2004). I needed a cheap, hip haircut fast so I thought I’d give them a shot since my regular salon is closed on Sundays. Located on Melrose, east of Fred Segal, I thought this one would be better because you can find hassle-free free parking on the street and since it’s not in the middle of the hot, hip Strip, I figured the wait wouldn’t be too bad. So I called an hour ahead of when I estimated I’d get there and put my name on the wait list.

Once there, I was welcomed by a promising sight: not every chair was filled and there was a long wooden bench along the wall where customers could wait. The guy at the counter marked me off on the list when I checked in, but warned me that they were short and backed up. So I sat for about 20 minutes and rocked out to the clubby music playing at nightclub levels on the salon’s sound system before my hair stylist came to get me. Busta Rhymes and Missy Elliot, nice. Other customers in the shop consisted of one guy who wanted to get rid of his mullet, one more down!, and a woman who was getting her long hair dyed bluish red.

Kenny, my hair stylist, seemed like a nice enough guy. He had short, hip hair, promising enough, but did he know how to handle long hair? He asked me what I wanted and unfortunately I wasn’t able to dig up a picture of Catherine Zeta-Jones’ newest do in time so I had to describe it to him. He seemed like he understood and proceeded.

Perfect cut

Now unlike all the other times I’ve been to Rudy’s on Sunset, this time I opted to pay the extra $20 to get my hair styled and blown out. I figure if I was going to get it cut so short that I should comfort myself with the extra pampering. And I was semi glad I did that. After Kenny blew dry my hair and styled it, he went back with the shears to do some touch-ups. My only complaint was that he was a touch caveman with the way he handled my head, pulling my hair with the brush to get it straight and hitting me a couple of times in the head with the blow dryer. In the end I was semi-happy with my shorter do, just because it looks more polished and more grown-up. Yeah, I think it makes me look older. A bit of a drag. Hmm…We’ll see what the public thinks.

I asked Kenny how much it would be to get my longish hair dyed and he said it’s about $65 and up just for a single process but the other stylists might charge about $100 and up. When I asked him why his price was low, he said because he didn’t believe in charging so much for something that was so easy to do. So I might just come back again to get my hair dyed bluish red. We’ll see.

In any case, I’d revise my review about Rudy’s, at least about the one on Melrose. Great for a cheap cut in a hurry. Sure, Fantastic Sam’s is cheaper but for the extra $5 or $6 you pay at Rudy’s you get your hair washed and styled with Bumble & Bumble product…and the anecdote of telling people you got your hair cut on Melrose.

8019 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90046
(323) 653-6078
Cross Street: Fairfax Avenue
Mon-Sat 9am-9pm; Sun 11am-7pm

EDIT: I ended up purchasing Bumble & Bumble hair tonic spray lotion cuz I saw that’s what Kenny used before he blew dry my hair. And it had made my hair so soft. The cashier said that he uses it when he doesn’t wash his hair. It has tea tree oil in it which replaces the natural oil in chemically treated or dry hair and it soothes the scalp. It’s also best for thick rather than fine hair. The first wash after the salon, I used it and it still made my hair soft. Love it. Surprisingly, at Rudy’s the spray is $22, but on Amazon it’s $22.99.